Learning to see the light underwater

I promised a while ago to write an article about underwater photography, and I have been so swamped I haven’t been able to!  BUT I thought I would start by sharing at least one before and after, so you can see what shooting in a lake can be like. I chose this shot because it gives you the sense of what the conditions in the lake are like. Literally pockets of light in very murky water that you have to learn to see. Personally, thats what draws me to keep shooting in the lake despite the challenges.

I will show you what I mean

Before:

After:

This was taken very late at night, the light was fairy flat, except for the neat pockets of really pretty light just barely penetrating the water.  I knew when I shot it it would just be about the light, and there would be a lot of shadow fall off. In my processing, I wasn’t so concerned about anything else but about the way the light highlighted his skin and hair, the bubbles (always a favourite element of mine) and the reflections.

In terms of gear, I was shooting with a wider angled lens, the 17-40mm 4L Canon. It  isn’t my favourite to shoot with, but it allows you to get closer to your subject and still get a sense of space, which I like. I waited until I saw the triangle shape made my the bubbles and the spotlight effect on him and exposed more for the light as I do like to add visual interest and structure into underwater photos.

If you have any questions at all – ask away! I am working on a more comprehensive post about underwater photography.

Cheers,

Jennifer

 

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